A provisional suspension handed down by the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) is posing a serious threat to the likelihood of a 2021 Australian Open return for Ukrainian tennis star Dayana Yastremska. The suspension was handed down provisionally after the controversial star tested positive for an illegal substance.
Should the 20-year-old be cleared to compete in this year’s competition, which gets underway in Melbourne on Feb. 8, the world No. 29 will be competing in the third Australian Open of her career. But since she’s elected not to exercise her right to apply to the Chair of the Independent Tribunal for a hearing that will allow her to state her case as to why the suspension should be uplifted, her competing in this year’s edition of the event is starting to seem highly unlikely.
The former world No. 21 has denied using any performance enhancing drug or forbidden substance and maintains that something she ingested unknowingly must have been contaminated. The young star also alleges that since only a very small trace of the illegal mesterolone metabolite had been detected in her urine, followed by two separate negative tests less than two weeks later, the result of the November test indicates contamination instead of wilful ingestion.
Last year’s Australian Open saw Yastremska at the center of immense controversy when 2018 AO champion Caroline Wozniacski accused the young star of having faked an injury in an attempt to topple her (Wozniacski’s) rhythm. The tennis community responded to the incident in unsurprised fashion, saying faking injuries was a common game tactic with the young Ukrainian.
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